Time for tougher penalties for fly-tipping, says CLA
Fly-tipping is not a victimless crime and private landowners are sick of having to pay hundreds of pounds to clear up other people's waste.
The CLA has proposed tougher measures to tackle the increasing problem of fly-tipping in the countryside.
It suggests a new five-point action plan, which includes seizing vehicles of offenders to act as a deterrent, and enforcing fines for those whose waste is found in fly-tipped locations.
The CLA also suggests appointing a fly-tipping “tsar” to co-ordinate with national agencies, developing new ways to clear up and support victims so that private landowners are not liable for the cost, as well as educating the public on this anti-social behaviour and working to help reduce waste crime through best practice.
True deterrent required
CLA president Ross Murray said: “Fly-tipping is not a victimless crime. Private landowners are fed up with clearing away other people’s rubbish and paying for the privilege. If they don’t act, they risk prosecution for illegal storage of waste, which is simply not fair.
“It’s not just the odd bin bag that is being fly-tipped but tonnes of hazardous waste, mattresses being set alight in woodland and even a dead horse dumped on private land because perpetrators know they can get away with it.
“We need to see tougher penalties which act as a true deterrent. Seizing vehicles involved in fly-tipping and imposing and enforcing penalties that better reflect the seriousness of the crime is vital. Only through co-ordinated and collective effort can we push back against this scourge that is damaging our countryside and rural economy,” he added.
Marked increase in fly-tipping
George Winn-Darley, owner of Aldby Park country estate at Buttercrambe near Stamford Bridge in East Yorkshire, revealed his account after being forced to deal with multiple incidents of fly-tipping each year. In January, his team had to spend 46 man hours removing two tractor trailers full of fly-tipped waste along road verges at a cost of around £800.
George explained: “Judging by the marked increase in fly-tipping, fixed penalty notices are really ineffective. Local authorities need to crack down hard by increasing fines, seizing vehicles and even imprisonment. At the moment, it is more expensive for the victim to remove the fly-tipped waste than the fixed penalty notice as more than 80 per cent of these are for £500 or less.
“My personal bug-bear is that of littering. It would be really great if high street fast food chains took responsibility for educating their customers on the appropriate ways in which to dispose of their rubbish.”